A believer, a space pope, and a cargo ship walk into a wormhole. Why is this starting to sound like some kind of bad joke?
Stories of EVE: The Space Pope’s Funniest EVE Online Story
EVE Online has a habit of landing its players in all sorts of hilarious predicaments. And whether you're prince, pauper, or pope you're not immune to the whims of a wormhole.
For those of you who don't yet know about EVE Online's space pope, well it's about time for you to learn. The NASA-scientist turned prankster turned life-saving hero is one of the most colourful, most beloved, and funniest EVE Online personalities around. Whether you're already acquainted with him or not, we highly, highly recommend you read this Space Pope interview right now.
As part of our ongoing Stories of EVE series (wherein we share the true, epic, awesome, and heart-warming tales from New Eden), we invited the Space Pope himself to share his most humorous parable in his own words.
Oh, my poor wife!
A Space Pope's Folly
The entire game of EVE Online is just a comedy of failure. EVE is not a game you can win. It's a game that beats you down and humiliates you again and again. The only way to win is to quit. But that's not going to happen.
The best stories are comedic tragedies. And EVE Online has a tonne of those. My favourite source of these comedic tragedies is wormholes. Something I myself have certainly come unstuck in... or technically speaking, the opposite.
Long story short, I was stuck in a wormhole for a very, very long time. Oh, my poor wife! When wormholes first came out, they were buggy. There was supposed to be an exit, but sometimes there was literally no way out. We were determined to find out which ours was. So we scanned, we scanned, and we scanned again.
There were three of us in that great void: my friend and I, in a cargo ship and a frigate (that is to say, we weren't exactly a force to be reckoned with) and one other, somewhere. He was a stranger whose cruiser had blown up moments before the wormhole closed. He shot out in his capsule, making it into the "safety" of the wormhole.
The only way to get out of a predicament like that, a ship-captain without a ship in a wormhole without a hole, is to eject from the capsule -- ending your own life and respawning in high-sec or wherever. Except he didn't, he was just floating through the abyss, even more aimless than we were.
That's when we saw his message in the local chat, "Please, come shoot me." Naturally, our survival instincts kicked in -- we were convinced it was a trap. With a cargo ship and a frigate, we had little more than a peashooter to defend ourselves with. No doubt sensing our hesitation, the guy writes again, "It's against my religion to kill myself. Even in a game. Someone needs to kill me because there's no way out of this horrible place, I'll be trapped here forever."
Intrigued enough to bite, my buddy cloaks up and warps nearby to scope out the situation. The capsule was indeed on its own. We added him to our fleet, and I worked my way to him. I improvised a final rite for him, we wished each other the best, and then the mercy killing began. Supposedly.
I tried to kill him. But wormholes have different effects on your weaponry. So, the pea shooter that I did have, all of a sudden became a spit shooter. Capsules normally only take two hits and they're gone. It took me 12 hits. All the while, this guy, who has long since made his peace with the world and supposedly said his dramatic final words, is like "Errr, can you cut a little deeper?"
But finally, he goes. Death by a thousand spit globules. Just before the final hit, he bade us goodbye with the words "I salute you, friends."
And then there were two, alone in the unending darkness. But my buddy and I, we refused to give up, refused to go gently into that good night. We were determined to find a way out. On the third day, even my wife (who is used to my antics) was like "Do I need to call psychiatric care? You're really upset about being stuck in this game."
So here's me, driving home the next day when I get a call from my buddy "I'm at a gate! I'm at a gate!! Get here!"
I drove home along the freeway trying to resist the urge to drive recklessly. I rush into my house, almost pushing past my wife. It's chaos. She's shouting, "What's wrong? What's wrong?!" I'm yelling incomprehensibly "We've found a way out!". "Oh my god!" she cries back -- at this stage, even she's bought into our drama. I log in with shaky hands rapping my fingers on the table as it loads.
And there it was, like an angel in the darkness, our wormhole -- our exit.
Funnily enough, when you go through a wormhole in EVE, you can end up pretty much anywhere in the 7000 star systems yet this wormhole took us just three jumps from our original entry point. A total accident, of course, but it felt like a gift from New Eden itself. The way I remember it, it's like I was there -- like I'm still there. That's the thing about these EVE stories, ask pilots about them and you can see it in their eyes that they're reliving it.
The Space Pope does have another contending story for funniest EVE tale, for that you'll have to wait until next time. You can read a more heart-warming story from the pope here though - Stories of EVE: Superfans' Most Heart-Warming EVE Online Moments. Otherwise check out some of these great options: Stories of EVE: Humans of New Eden, Stories of EVE: Snuffed Out? A Tale of Karmic Justice, Stories of EVE: The "Jaw Droppingly Insane" EVE Online Star System Run, and Stories of EVE: Wind-up Cat & Mouse in Space.
And whatever you do, don't miss out on that glorious Space Pope interview.